I didn't want to let Valentine's Day fly away in my giddiness without sharing with you the simplest of strawberry tiramisu recipes - one devised by my mother years before there was a tiramisu dessert.
My sister and I have summer birthdays and our cakes were always made with ladyfingers - a Grand Manier Cake, a Charlotte Russe cake and a Strawberry Shortcake.
ladyfingers (12-18 depending if you are doing one big bowl or individuals)
one cup whipping cream
1 T sugar
1 t vanilla
4 oz mascarpone, room temperature
*2-4 T Kirsch (Cherry brandy) optional
1 cup seedless strawberry jam
1-1/2 quarts fresh strawberries, washed and hulled
Lay your ladyfingers in a decorative bowl. You can also use a highball glass and break a ladyfinger in half and lay it in the glass creating individual tiramisu parfaits. Add your sugar and vanilla to your cream and whip until soft peaks hold their shape. Fold or whip in your mascarpone.
Meanwhile, warm your strawberry jam (makes it easier to spread) and add your Kirsch if using. Simmer for a few minutes. Cool a tiny bit.
Brush 1/2 the jam over the ladyfingers. Add a layer of half the cream mixture. Layer another layer of ladyfingers ans repeat - the rest of the jam layer and then the cream. Top all with the strawberries. Let sit four hours or overnight. Serve.
Red and white, purity and love, heart and soul, winter-bright sweetness for you. And to close, a lovely ditty about love from friends to friends.
When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie
When an eel bites your hand and that's not what you planned
That's a moray.
When our habits are strange and our customs deranged
That's our mores.
When your horse munches straw and the bales total four
That's some more hay.
When Othello's poor wife, she gets stabbed with a knife
That's a Moor, eh?
When a Japanese knight used a sword in a fight
As a theatre geek, I did wince a bit knowing Othello's wife was not stabbed by a knife but the charm of the poem got to me - yep - an arrow through the heart. Hope everyone has a day filled with winter bright love and a little giddiness.